July 7 is “the day of a ponytail”.
The anniversary was established by the Japan Ponytail Association in 1995, as July 7 is also known as “the day of a yukata”, and a ponytail goes well with a yukata.
The hairstyle was named a ponytail, because the hair that is gathered, secured at the back of the head, and hanging freely, looks like a tail of a pony. A ponytail is very popular as it can be styled in a variety of ways. There are many characters with a ponytail appearing in anime and games. They are depicted in many ways, active, sporty, cute, adorable, etc. Who is the most popular ponytail character among them?
Therefore, Anime!Anime! conducted an annual reader survey titled ‘When you think of a “ponytail”, which character comes to your mind?’. During the survey period from June 21 to 28, a total of 291 responses were received. For the gender ratio, the females were the majority with about 80% while the males were about 20%. For the age distribution, we received the majority of responses from the young readers: about 40% were from teens, and 25% were from those in their 20s.
■A male character topped the list, which is the only one in the top 10.
1st place went to Ginoza Nobuchika from “Psycho-Pass”. The support rating was about 13%.
The readers said they were surprised by his hairstyle change in the middle of the series, saying “He changed his hairstyle to a ponytail from the movie, and it was surprising. He manipulates a Dominator and performs his skills of material arts with his long hair waving. Such a gap is too cool”, and “Gino-san looks good with a ponytail even though he is already over 30 years old. He is so cool”.
Many readers were also wondering why he changed his hairstyle to a ponytail, saying “I was struck by the gap as he has changed too much from the beginning…… My imagination is running as there must be some reason for growing his hair”.
2nd place went to Toyama Kazuha from “Detective Conan”. The support rating was about 11%.
The comments received include, “She uses a different color of ribbon depending on the situation. She looks good with it and so cute! I used to imitate it!”, and “The hairstyle matches her in good shape”. The readers said that a ponytail matches her cheerful personality. Other reader commented, “When she puts her hair down, she looks exceptionally cute”, which shows that her rare hairstyle also attracts fans.
3rd place went to Shimura Tae from “Gintama”. The support rating was about 8%.
The readers consider her ponytail as her signature, saying “She is stronger than anyone, which is so cool” and “A ponytail with blown hair is cute”. Some readers mentioned the stylish ending anime, saying “I still remember that she was in a suit and tying a ponytail in the ending theme ‘Anagra'”.
■Let’s introduce other comments!!
Zenin Maki from “Jujutsu Kaisen”
“She is a stubborn character with a showy and conspicuous ponytail.”
“Her ponytail waves while the battles. That’s so cool!”
Kino Makoto/Sailor Jupiter from “Sailor Moon”
“I got to love a boyish style because of her.”
Lillie from “Pokémon: Sun & Moon”
“The scene, where she changed her image with a ponytail to save her mother and persuaded, was impressive.”
Suzumiya Haruhi from “The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya”
“She usually has a semi-long hairstyle, but in important scenes, she changes it to a ponytail. This is an essential element to represent the relationship between Haruhi and Kyon.”
A character, who ties her hair to a ponytail for a certain reason, was also ranked.
In the survey 2021, Ginoza Nobuchika topped the list as the only male character in the top 10. This year has a very confusing battle with 14 characters sharing 19th place.
[When you think of a “ponytail”, which character comes to your mind? 2021 edition]
1. Ginoza Nobuchika “Psycho-Pass”
2. Toyama Kazuha “Detective Conan”
3. Shimura Tae “Gintama”
4. Ayase Eli ”Love Live!”
5. Kamiya Kaoru “Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Swordsman Romantic Story”
5. Yaoyorozu Momo “My Hero Academia”
7. Zenin Maki “Jujutsu Kaisen”
8. Taneshima Popura “WORKING!!”
8. Yamabuki Saaya “BanG Dream!”
8. Leafa(Kirigaya Suguha) “Sword Art Online”
11. Koishikawa Miki “Marmalade Boy”
12. Kino Makoto/Sailor Jupiter “Sailor Moon”
12. Sasha Blouse “Attack on Titan”
14. Maki Oze “Fire Force”
14. Matsuura Kanan “Love Live! Sunshine!!”
16. Saotome Alto “Macross Frontier”
16. Sakura Kyoko “Puella Magi Madoka Magica”
16. Sonozaki Mion “Higurashi When They Cry”
19. Akatsuki “Log Horizon”
19. Uru Chie “High School! Kimengumi”
19. Kazemaru Ichirouta “Inazuma Eleven”
19. Kato Megumi “Saekano: How to Raise a Boring Girlfriend”
19. Kanda Yuu “D.Gray-man”
19. Kirasaka Sayaka “Strike the Blood”
19. Kirishima Hiyori “The World’s Greatest First Love”
19. Suzumiya Haruhi “The Melancholy of Haruhi Suzumiya”
19. Takao “Azur Lane”
19. Tsuyuri Kanao “Demon Slayer: Kimetsu no Yaiba”
19. Nakagawa Natsuki “Sound! Euphonium”
19. Himura Kenshin “Rurouni Kenshin: Meiji Swordsman Romantic Story”
19. Yada Toka “Assassination Classroom”
19. Yamanaka Ino “NARUTO”
（Survey Period: June 21 – 28, 2021）
*This survey is intended to research the readers’ “interest in anime and characters today”. It is not intended to discuss the relative merits of each character nor work. I would be glad if this article can help you develop an understanding and interest in the anime and characters.